Where Do You Live?

Indian Trail, North Carolina

Tell Us About Your Family…

Jason and I have been married 10 years, and we have two children, John and Ruth.  John is 9 and Ruth is 7.  Our kids love being outdoors, going to McDonald’s and Chick fil a, and playing.  John loves to look for trains, draw pictures of trains and rabbits and listen to music.  Ruth enjoys playing with friends and playing veterinarian with her stuffed animals.  Ruth likes to dance and collect shopkins.  Jason loves the St. Louis Cardinals and is so excited baseball season is here.  I love working at our church, talking and meeting with friends, and reading a good book.

How Has Autism Impacted Your Family?

John was diagnosed with autism when he was two and a half years old.  John received the diagnosis of Obsessive Compulsive disorder this past summer.  Autism has truly impacted our life.  When we found out, we were devastated.  My husband and I learned in counseling that we were in deep grief.  We learned that we had so many dreams for our son that we didn’t realize.  We began grieving dreams we had for him.  Questions like, “Will he be able to attend a school  kindergarten class?  Will he get married?  Will he be able to go to college and live independently?”  Although our son was only two and a half we processed these thoughts.  We continue to learn to live over our grief and have discovered that God had a bigger plan for John than we ever could have imagined.  John is genuine, likes duck duck goose, sings beautifully, and prays for people.  Some of the most painful griefs have helped us grow and learn more about enjoying life to the fullest and increased our faith in Jesus Christ.  We have felt the deep love of God.

How Do You Participate In Your Community?

We participate in the community through grocery shopping at Food Lion and Walmart.  John really likes how the aisles are numbered at Walmart.  He likes to hear the “do, do, do” sound at Walmart on the speaker.  John enjoys toilets and seeing how the water flows in different area stores and restaurants and homes in the community.  John plays Bambino ball with MARA.  We all love going to the Joni and Friends family retreat each summer for vacation.  Our church family at Church of the Redeemer has blessed us immensely.

What Would You Tell A Local Family With A New Diagnosis?

My prayer for a family recently receiving a diagnosis is that they will feel understood in their pain and grief.  That they will know they are not alone and that it’s okay to grieve.